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My folks were doing some renos downstairs (the weather warmed up considerably the last few days) and they thought it would be a great time to do some of the plumbing repairs which required dad to break a hole in the cement down there to feed a pipe through to the outside ...

... due to the warmer weather the compost heap has started doing it's thing with breaking down (and smelling ripe) and attracting rats to our yard (as well as a few owls have showed up, attracted to the rats) ...

Normally, not a big deal.

However...

This time the warm weather heating up the compost heap attracting the rats has had an interesting twist which has made things pretty exciting around here the last few days.

One of the rats managed to find the hole in the cement and got into the basement.

The night before last my folks and their dog were going crazy nearly all day pulling shelves away from walls... poking under furnature with the broom, setting traps and letting their dog try and catch the thing. The hounds were going crazy upstairs begging to be let downstairs to help out in the rukus ... but my folks said no... they were having a tough enough time down there with Bella (their dog).

So anyway... last night mom found some blood under her kitchen sink so she figured Bella must have got the rat ... everyone settled down, the dogs seemed to go back to normal ... all was well...

Ha! <_<

So ... there I was all curled up on the couch, with all the lights off, after midnight, watching a scarey show, :mellow: ..... all by myself ... the hounds were tucked away in the kennel for the night ... the children were all in bed ... the house was quiet ...

Then suddenly, at a very tense part of the show .... I see out of the corner of my eye a large dark shape scootch across the floor along the wall! :blink: :eek:

... At first I was like ... no-o-o-o-o-o couldn't be... I must just be spooked from the movie ... wrapped the blanket a little tighter around myself and tried to relax back into the couch ...

... but then!

<div align="center">*scratch-rustle-scratch-bump!* </div>

Right underneath me!!!!

I tell you I flew off the couch and across the room and tossed open the kennel door and rudely woke up Mocha and Beldin and ordered them to "go get that dirty rat!"

They both slowly blinked at me like "huh?! You gotta be kiddin me... it's after midnight ... talk to us again in the morning!" And rolled over and Beldin promptly started snoring!

Here I have a rat ... in my house ... and this "hunter" is snoring! <_<

So fine ... I leave them be and try track the thing down myself... to no avail ... 3am comes around... 4am ... I'm up on the couch... my eyes glued open and jumping and twitching at every *scramble* noise I hear.

Morning rolls around, the hounds wake up of their own accord... and after a morning pee and a good breakfast they FINALLY seem to realize, "Hey ... there's a new smell to the air" ...

Both Mocha and Beldin have been "tracking" most of the day... wandering around stuffing their noses into the corners and snorting and growling and sniffing.

I think they may have found where the thing's primary hiding spot is (at least they both seem to be going back to the one place more than others) ... they keep trying to stuff their heads between the wall and the cupboard where the built in dishwasher is ... so we opened the cupboard and found evidence of the rat ... my dad has set some traps in there with peanut butter ...

And as I sit here typing this both Mocha and Beldin are in "hunt mode" still ... I don't think they've stopped moving at all snce this morning... they're sniffing and tracking and looking and listening and once in a while they growl in the direction of the dishwasher ...

... as for me... I think I'll leave the kennel door open tonight ... and maybe a nightlight on! :lol:
 

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:lol: Great story! Sounds like something that would happen at our house! Well...actually we did have a similar occurance when the cat and the dog were after a tiny field mouse that had gotten in the house. But I can't tell it as good as you did! Keep us posted on this adventure! :lol:
 

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Thanks for sharing. I would freak out. I do not handle stuff like this well.

~Heather
 

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What a story! I was on the edge of my seat. That happened to me once, except it was a young mouse, and it was in my bed! I slept in a chair in my living room for a month (which was approximately 29 days longer than the mouse lived). I don't know why I thought the mouse could get into my bed but not up onto a chair. I hope one of your intrepid hunters (or the trap) catches the intruder!
 

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I'm up at 2 a.m. reading your story and getting scared!!!! Someone (Ruby or hubby?) made barfing noises at 1:30 a.m. and I doubt it's hubby, so I flew out of bed to take care of whomever. Nothing in our bed....nothing in Ruby's.....but I took Ruby outside.

When we lived in Bassetchusetts, our first house as a lovely (and inexpensive back then) three story colonial in the woods. Beautiful house, lots of fond memories and not so fond memories. One of them was the fact that mice live in the woods. And they had a habit of chewing up the insulation in the basement and getting into the walls. We used every single kind of rodent proof insulation and they ate thru everything. Even ate thru poison and never died.

We got Ruby about the same time but we never let her into the basement. I used to think I heard a noise inside the walls of the main (second level) near the stairs leading up to the bedrooms upstairs. Baby Ruby smelled and/or heard them too. She was bezerk into hunt mode and tracked it to the area where I thought it was thru the walls. Fortunately the noise stopped after about a day and everyone went about their business. Never saw the mouse, thank ALL the Gods, so I guess it had died.

We told this story to friends also in that area who told us a chilling story about a year after they bought their house in our city at the time. They thought they had mice even tho they had never seen any anywhere in their house. Their house wasn't in a wooded area at all.

When they started having electrical problems it was determined that a (large) family of raccoons had made babies many times over in their attic!!! Cost them thousands upon thousands of $$'s to get rid of the problem and redo their attic.

We considered ourselves fortunate after hearing about this. However, if I had ever found a mouse or rat IN MY BED.....the for sale sign would have been up that day!

I might not be able to fall asleep now...just thinking about that!

Janice
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Okay, as I mentioned, my dad had set some traps for our newest (unwelcome) tenant (who now has a name: Ben Scabbers ;) ) with peanut butter ...

... well at some point mom and I were having a tea downstairs on Sunday, and somehow we decided that peanut butter just wouldn't do ... because this rat is a "special" rat and smart ... and peanut butter just wouldn't be enough to lure the little bugger to his impending doom - so - we decided we needed to spiff up the traps a bit and mom got the idea to add a bit of shrimp.

So mom got the shrimp and together we reset the first trap downstairs under her kitchen sink. Now the thing was already loaded, but it was the kind where when you pull the snappy part back and the little bar over the top it pokes into a little hole in the paddle where you put the food ... I put my left hand out flat and lowered it down over the loaded part to hold it back, then mom pushed the bit of shrimp on to the little paddle and got her hand out of the way and I slowly raised my hand back up off the loaded part. - Voila! Shrimp a la Peanut Butter for Mr. Ben Scabbers! No problem - we stuck the trap back underneath the sink and mom gave me a couple peices of shrimp for the two traps upstairs.

So armed with shrimp, I march upstairs with new confidence of ridding ourselves of the little muncher and carefully dig out the trap under my kitchen sink. I decide that the way we did mom's trap downstairs worked so well I'd use the same technique on this one! So ... left hand lowers carefully over the loaded part, holding it in place while the right hand pushes a bit of shrimp on to the paddle ... both hands carefully away and - Voila! Second trap good to go for "that dirty rat"!

The last trap was behind the stove ... I carefully pull it out and set it on the counter in preperation for reloading ... but this trap was different ...

Instead of a little hole for the bar to poke in to ... it had just a tiny little bump that it rests against on the paddle ... and the food paddle didn't just go up and down like the others, it's on a little swivel ... so basically you breathe on the this thing and it goes off! ... Only ... I didn't see those (important) differences prior to trying to reset it because .... you guessed it .... peanut butter! It was smeared so good with that goo I could barely see the "business" parts and just thought it would be like the others.

So ... my right hand is poised with a peice of shrimp, ready to push it on the paddle ... my left hand starts to lower carefully down on the loaded bar and just before my left hand completes it's downward journey to apply careful pressure on the loaded bar to hold it in place ...

<div align="center">!!! SNAP !!!</div>

I swear ... the thing LUNGED out from under my left and and attacked me! It maliciously chomped down on my thumb and first two fingers of my right hand while simultaniously flinging the bit of shrimp out of the kitchen and all the way across the livingroom ...

... and the pain ... was tremendous ...

So, to make a long story just a little bit longer ... I sat down on the floor babbling gibberish (I think I was trying to swear but was in too much pain to formulate any articulate wording) ... I carefully pried the Stephen King Special off my mangled fingers ... and holding my hand out in front of me I stumbled down the stairs calling for my "mommy".

Well, mom sandwiched my hand between a couple of freezer packs and wrapped it up with a cloth ... and gave me a swig of some stuff "to calm me" (I found out later it was some German herbal bitters = really high alcohol content ... that point comes to light a bit later) ... and dad took me to the hospital.

At the hospital it was almost amusing ... I explained what happened to the admitting nurse, she wrote everything down on a chart ... and all the way back until I got to see the actual doctor that took car of my fingers my chart was greeted with the same reaction ...

Someone (a nurse or doctor) would pick it up ... and visibally cringe and say, "Ooh!" And glance my way and shake their heads ... partially in sympathy and partially I'm sure with a look that said "You [email protected]$$!" *hehe*

So anyway the doctor gave me some pain killers prior to starting his poking and proding of my swollen fingers to find out just how bad or not it was. He asked if I was allergic to anything, I said not that I know of ... he says "Here swallow these" I ask "What is it" and he says, "Strong - swallow." .... Okay then.

Now ... here's where what my mother gave me to swallow (With the words "Just take it, you have to learn to trust me".) Apparently whatever the doctor gave me had an interesting reaction with the herbal bitters my mother gave me ...

... can you say .... Loopy ...? *hehe*

Anyhow, turns out no bones were broken ... the doctor said I was actually lucky to catch all three fingers in there cause it helped distribute the damage over an area ... he said if I caught just one it probably would have broken for sure if not worse.

I mashed the cartilage in my knuckles on my fingers and bruised the tendons and the doctor says there's a membrane between the bone and the cartilage that has some nerves in it that I damaged so I may lose some feeling in those two fingers but should otherwise heal up and be fine. I also sprained my thumb.

Now all that is bad enough .... but wait - there's more!

All this happened just before a meeting I was supposed to go to for a receptionist position at a fitness center just up the street from me ... I had to call and cancel for the night ...

PLUS I was supposed to start a new job with a local exterior painting company as an apprentice on Monday morning! (I currently do interior painting but have no exterior experience yet) ...

My hands are basically my livelihood ... and my right hand in particular (since I'm right handed) and as "luck" would have it my right hand is the one I mushed!

So Monday morning I showed up anyhow ... with my bandaged hand and everything ... answered all the "Ohhh what happened" questions and was greeted with the same *cringe* "Ooh!" from my fellow painters that I got from the nurses and doctors.

They actually managed to find some things for me to do one-handed and I stuck it out as long as I was able ... but I've been given the rest of the week off.

So here I sit today, typing this up, watching the hounds "track" around the walls and growl occationally in the direction of the kitchen dish-washer.

My mother came up to tell me that her trap under the kitchen sink is "cleaned out" (apparently the little rod was too far into the hole) ... and personally ... I hope that the trap that "bit" me is the one that gets our rat anyway ... I know that one works ... and there's something to be said for poetic justice!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Oh my goodness! :blink: We have racoons around here too but as far as I know none have managed to get into the house! :p
 
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